My fondest memories are times spent with my German grandmother, known to me as “oma.” She was a wonderful woman that gave unconditional love so readily and taught me many magnificent things regarding tradition and culture.
I grew up in Germany until the age of 16, which, thankfully, enabled me to spend a lot of time with my oma. I have vivid memories of being in her garden helping her dig up fresh vegetables and pick berries and snap beans, and then bringing everything to the kitchen and prepping for canning.
In addition to teaching me so much about fresh produce, she showed me how to crochet and knit—by far two of her favorite pastimes. My oma could knit up some of the most fabulous sweaters, doilies and afghans. To this day, I have no idea how she did it so effortlessly.
I truly cherish those special times when I got to spend the night at her house and eat my favorite “peanut puff chips” while watching our special program, Little Sandman, a German children’s bedtime TV show. These treasured occasions will remain very close to my heart.
Other fond memories I have of being at my oma’s include building forts with my sister on the veranda with all of her blankets and pretending the fort was our own little home. My oma would welcome our creative play with open arms, providing us with anything and everything we needed.
She was truly a woman of grace and stature, and she instilled in us our ladylike manners and etiquette—from how to behave at the dinner table to our attire. I can’t imagine it being possible to admire her any more than I do.
I miss her each day; however, I am so grateful for the times I did have with her. She helped shape a great deal of my character and holds a special place in my heart.
The memories we create from the relationships we cultivate are by far life’s greatest gifts. May we all find those gifts from the people we love and who help shape our lives.
I often remind myself that given how short life is, it is so important to remain anchored in the moment and be grateful for life’s simple pleasures, as it is those things that truly define us.
Peace and Love,
Jeannette Draper, Publisher